KwaZulu-Natal Churches’ AIDS Network (KZNCAN) – FOCUS PROGRAM
The KZNCAN FOCUS program is about the role and the responsibilities of the Church in the HIV and Aids context. In 2004 KZNCC continued to mobilize and encouraged Churches and Christian organisations to respond effectively to the HIV and AIDS pandemic.
The purpose of the KZNCAN Faith-based Organizational Capacity Strengthening Universal HIV Service program (FOCUS) is to strengthen the capacity of local partner FBOs to train leaders in strategies to positively influence social and gender norms, mobilize demand for services, and support PLHIV to seek and remain in care. KZNCC mobilizes and strengthens local Churches and Church based organizations that will furthermore work through local community structures to provide or refer persons for HIV testing, actively link PLHIV to HIV care, and support persons to initiate and adhere to HIV treatment and remain in care.
Emphases of the KZNCAN FOCUS Program are:
- Influencing social and gender norms to decrease stigma, discrimination and gender-based violence towards and among People Living With HIV and AIDS (PLHIV).
- Mobilizing demand for HIV services, especially among populations not easily reached in facility-based care models.
- Supporting PLHIV throughout the continuum of care (testing, active linkages to care, treatment initiation, adherence on HIV treatment and retention in care) to ensure successful HIV treatment (viral suppression).
- Developing a Theology of Care Model within the context of the 95 95 95 strategy. The model outlines the prophetic and pastoral roles of the church in contributing towards,
reducing stigma, supporting the establishment of adherence clubs and support groups within the church setup, facilitating the establishment of local churches as dispensing centres or pick up points for ARVs, diabetic, TB and other chronic medications so that Churches are wellness Centres.
- Developing bible study materials, hymns and pastoral letters that speaks to the prevalence of diseases, control and management for use in Churches;
- Promoting cooperation, resource-sharing and innovation among Churches and ecumenical structures working on HIV and AIDS;
- Facilitating liaison between Churches, NGOs and government on HIV, Aids and other health matters;
- Devising appropriate interventions to support child-headed households and undocumented asylum seekers and refugees on HIV and AIDS issues;
- Creating sustainable strategic networks to collaborate on HIV & AIDS campaigns.